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Chrysopilus asiliformis
Little Snipefly
Kleine Schnepfenfliege

Male specimen. Specimen photographed in Frankfurt am Main (Hessen) on June 2, 2011.

Male specimen. Specimen photographed in Frankfurt am Main (Hessen) on June 2, 2011.

Female specimen. Specimen photographed in Göttingen (Niedersachsen) on July 7, 2012.

Krivosheina (2006) considers two subspecies of C. asiliformis (but note that she uses the name Chrysopilus aureus): Chrysopilus aureus aureus and Chrysopilus aureus meridionalis
. However, the diagnostic differences given by Krivosheina are not convincing. The figures of the genitalia of meridionalis and aureus are virtually identical, and contrary to the diagnosis by Krivosheina I can see no significant differences in the shape of sternite IX: both are wedge shaped, with a posterior notch and an anterior slightly concave edge. The pterostigma of this species is dark, but the sides are blurred, thus the length of the pterostigma can vary in different specimens. Krivosheina (2006) proposes that those with a short pterostigma are aureus and those with a longer pterostigma (exceeding the base of M4) are meridionalis, but I have seen copulae where one sex had the long and the other sex the short pterostigma. Finally, the color of the coxae is said to differ, but this is variable as well and I cannot currently correlate this variability with two distinct subspecies. Thus, I do not recognize subspecies of Chrysopilus asiliformis.

Original description
Preyssler, 1791

Rhagio diadema Fabricius, 1775 (nec Musca diadema Linnaeus, 1767) (misidentifaction)
Leptis diadema (Fabricius, 1775)

Atherix diadema (Fabricius, 1775)
Musca diadema (Fabricius, 1775)
diadema (Fabricius, 1775)
Musca asiliformis Preyssler, 1791
Chrysopilus asiliformis (Preyssler, 1791)
Rhagio aureus Meigen, 1804 (p. 302)
Atherix aureus (Meigen, 1804)
Chrysopilus aureus (Meigen, 1804)
Chrysopilus aureus aureus (Meigen, 1804)
Atherix aurulans Meigen, 1820 (p. 101) (nomen nudum, based on
in litteris name)
Rhagio aurulans (Meigen, 1820) (nomen nudum)
Atherix lurida Meigen, 1820 (p. 101) (nomen nudum, based on in litteris name)
Atherix luridus Meigen, 1820 (nomen nudum)
Rhagio luridus (Meigen, 1820) (nomen nudum)
Atherix vitripennis Meigen, 1820 (p. 101)
(nomen nudum, based on in litteris name) (nec Leptis vitripennis Meigen, 1820 (p. 91))
Leptis vitripennis (Meigen, 1820)
(nomen nudum) (nec Leptis vitripennis Meigen, 1820 (p. 91))
Chrysopilus meridionalis Bezzi, 1898
Chrysopilus aureus meridionalis (Bezzi, 1898)

Fabricius described Rhagio diadema and suggested in the original description that it was identical to Musca diadema described by Linnaeus. However, Musca diadema Linnaeus, 1767 is not a Rhagionidae species. This was thus an misidentification by Fabricius. Moreover, when Gmelin transferred Fabricius´ Rhagio diadema to the genus Musca, both names became homonyms.

The original description by Preyssler (1791) is very detailed for its time and there is also a good image clearly showing a female Chrysopilus species. The description is sufficient to identify this species even though no types are known to exist. The size given by Preyssler, 2.5 Parisian lines (about 5,75 mm) additionally confirms the identity, because most other Central European species are larger.

Atherix aurulans, Atherix luridus and Atherix vitripennis have been listed as synonyms in the Fauna Europaea Web Service (2004). However, the text of Meigen (1820, p. 101) only states that specimens of Leptis diadema have been sent to him by other researchers under these names. Thus, these names are names in letters and were not intended as name descriptions. In addition, the Atherix vitripennis mentioned by Meigen in the description of Rhagio diadema on page 101 is not the same as the Leptis vitripennis described by him on page 91. This is an error in the Fauna Europaea Web Service (2004).




This page has been updated on October 27, 2011
This site is online since May 31, 2005
Copyright © by Nikola-Michael Prpic. All rights reserved.

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Original description